India: Pakistani Army colonel was involved in Mumbai attacks

individual linked to the Pakistani state of playing a role in the Mumbai atrocities, a development that will place yet more strain on the tense relationship between the two nuclear-armed neighbors.

The Times’s Rhys Blakely writes that the document detailing the charges against Azam Amir Kasab, the sole gunman to be captured alive, accuses Colonel Saadat Ullah of helping to set up the phone network used by the terrorists to speak to their handlers during the attacks. The document claims that the officer is part of the Pakistan Army’s Special Communications Organization (SCO), an offshoot of the signals corps. Col. Ullah was traced using information partly supplied by the FBI, a senior police officer said.

According to police documents obtained by the Times, the ten Islamist militants who rampaged through Mumbai spoke to their handlers in Pakistan during the attacks via mobile phones connected to Callphonex, an Internet telephony provider based in New Jersey. The militants’ Callphonex account was set up by an individual who identified himself as Kharak Singh, using the e-mail account kharak_telco@ Indian police claim that this e-mail account was accessed from ten different unique IP addresses, including one used by Col. Ullah.

Blakely reports that in the 11,000-page charge sheet filed by the Indian police against Kasab, the colonel’s physical address is given as Qasim Road, Rawalpindi, Pakistan, which is the headquarters of the SCO. The document says that Col. Ullah and another man, Khurram Shazad, of the same address, “facilitated communication … and hence conspired with [Kasab] in perpetuating the heinous crime.”

The charge sheet also details the involvement of a mastermind figure referred to by the gunmen and their handlers during their attacks only as “Major General Sahab,” which the Mumbai police has been unable to identify.

The charge sheet may fall short of providing definitive proof of Col. Ullah’s involvement, Internet experts said. It is possible to route Internet traffic to disguise its origin: other IP addresses used to access the gunmen’s telephone service account were traced to Chicago, Kuwait, and Moscow.

The criminal investigation begun by the Mumbai police has identified thirty-seven suspects — including the two army officers — wanted for their alleged involvement in a plot that struck thirteen targets across Mumbai, including two luxury hotels and an orthodox Jewish outreach center, terrorizing the city for 60 hours. All but two of the suspects, many of whom are identified only through aliases, are Pakistani.

Blakely notes that in